There are many people out there who don't believe in the power of social media. As a social media lover, it is hard for me to wrap my head around this concept. The power of social media has been proven time and again by brands both old and new. I've seen it and it is a beautiful thing.
The truth is this: Social media does not exist in a vacuum. You can't just throw up a Facebook page and expect sales to increase overnight. In reality, a social media campaign should coincide with your entire marketing plans and business goal, both short and long term. Social media should support your business. If you are not seeing the results that you want, then maybe it's time to reassess why your networks are not giving you the results that you're looking for.Social media does not exist in a vacuum.Click To Tweet
In order to be really successful at this social media thing, you've got to put in the time and money, just like with any other marketing strategy. Today, I've put together seven easy things you can do to support your social media marketing campaigns and put you one step closer to seeing the results that you're looking for.
Make Your Content Easy To Share
Before you begin your social media campaign, you'll need to assess your content and make sure it's easy to share. Do you have sharing buttons on your website? Can users easily see your social media icons? Is sharing your awesome content the next logical step for your visitors?
For example, I love to use Click to Tweet option that comes with the Social WarFare Plugin* in my blog posts because it allows for an easy way to share for readers. In addition, I also like to add a Pinterest optimized image for easy sharing to that platform as well. Simple tweaks like these make sharing your content a bit easier.
Something as easy as giving your audience a reason to share the content can go really far. Just make sure to use this type of “asking” sparingly and only for important content. Here's a whitty example from Eat24:
Every time you tell a friend about EAT24, a unicorn high fives a t-rex in outer space.
— Eat24 (@Eat24) May 20, 2015
Reach Out To Bloggers For Collaboration
Blogging is huge right now in the way that it's replacing the reality TV phase. People want to connect with others like them and blogging is providing that. There are bloggers with thousands of followers looking to connect with brands that their audience will like. Connecting with bloggers does take a bit of research (a.k.a. time) to learn which ones fit in your niche, will work with brands, and charge a price within your budget.
I'm a blogger and I hate to tell you how many times brands reach out to me with nothing to offer in return for promoting them. So a little word of advice: Give something of value in return. It can be a social media share or a free product. While not all bloggers require a monetary compensation, the more influence they have, the more you should expect to pay.
This next example is one from a collaboration I did with Canadian superstore Giant Tiger. Not only was I compensated for reviewing and promoting their maxi dresses, but they also shared the blog post on their social media as a pleasant surprise for me.
Run a Giveaway
Most people like free stuff, especially if it's something they were already considering spending their money on. I touched on this thought in my last blog post: if you give your customers something for free, not only are you putting your faith in them but you're also building a trust filled relationship that can benefit you in the long run.
If you're a new brand, try pairing up with a blogger or similar business to promote your giveaway. Not only are you multiplying your audience reach, but you're adding authority to each other's brand by showing that you're not living in a bubble.
Promote on Other Platforms
Use the power of the internet to your advantage. Forum marketing is a great way to build relationships and get the word out about your product in a natural “word-of-mouth” kind of way.
You can also use email marketing as a great way to boost your social media campaigns and to capture more of the market. Some of your followers may only check Facebook twice a month but they check their email every day. Use the power of email together with your social media campaigns for the best results.
Whether you have a physical or digital product, you could add some sort of call-to-action on the packaging. The below brand, Indie Hair Products, added #superfirm to their packaging. A quick Instagram search proves that customers are showcasing their hairspray using the awesome hashtag.
Providing your followers and potential customers with a call-to-action gives them a reason to interact with you on social media. Make sure you are engaging with them back! Follow up with those who use your hashtag and thank them for that interaction by liking, commenting, or following them.
Entice Social Engagement With Discounts & Coupons
If you're seeing website traffic that's not equating into sales or social media engagement, then maybe you need to build trust with your viewers by providing them with free content! Twitter's Flock to Unlock program allowed brands to have exclusive content that only could be viewed if enough users shared it. Check out Puma's tweet below for an example:
Are you #ForeverFaster? Unlock our latest TV spot on Twitter and see it before the rest of the world. http://t.co/RKFmPpdFFy
— PUMA (@PUMA) August 4, 2014
Another way I've seen this done is by offering a discount or promotion for visiting a Facebook page or following on Instagram. These types of offerings can be difficult to track so make sure you have a great plan in place for execution.
Give Samples At Events
Kansas restaurant Houlihans hands out these fantastic coasters!
Simple, affordable, and effective, using a freebie at an event gives people that personal touch that they crave while also putting something physical in their hands. It's an impression that's often neglected in new businesses! Don't be afraid of showing your face and giving something physical.
A Final Note:
Social media marketing is a marathon, not a sprint. Like with many other marketing strategies, when you're creating a social media strategy, you're in it for the long haul. Keep your momentum going by continuing to engage your audience both on and off the screen in order to keep your brand interesting.Social media marketing is a marathon, not a sprint.Click To Tweet
*This is an affiliate link only used because I actually really love the product.
Andréa Jones is a social media strategist who works with lifestyle brands to build their online presence through targeted social media and content marketing solutions. She's also the founder of SavvySocialSchool.com – a membership community with everything you need to achieve visibility, growth, and engagement on social media.